September is National Rice Month (National Rice Day is June 29th, National Fried Rice Day is September 20th). Here’s a good-looking rice dish, called Black & White Rice. A combination of “black” and white rices, can make it with wild rice, which is dark brown, or black rice (also called forbidden rice*), which is cooks up to dark purple. The recipe follows; and there are more tasty rice recipes below.
If you decide to purchase black rice, there are more ways to use it in the photos. Also see the footnote* below.
> The History Of Rice
1. RINSE and drain the wild rice. Place the wild rice in the pressure cooker with 3 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Lock the lid in place, bring to HIGH pressure, and cook for 18 minutes.
If using black rice, add water or stock at a ratio of 1-3/4 cups per 1 cup of black rice. If your rice cooker has a brown rice mode, start it. Otherwise, set the timer to 25 minutes (additional information).
2. RELEASE the pressure. Drain the wild rice, set aside and keep warm.
3. HEAT the oil in the pressure cooker and stir in the white rice and onion. Sauté for a minute or two. Add the water or broth and optional salt . Lock the lid in place, bring to HIGH pressure, and cook for 7 minutes. Release the pressure. Stir in the reserved wild rice and serve.
TO MOLD: To form the rice into an attractive square as in photo #1, or a circle, use a food mold. Remove the top and bottom from an empty can and use it as a round mold. A shorter can like tuna is easier to use.
*Forbidden rice is black in color when raw, deep purple when cooked. It was once reserved for the ancient Chinese emperors, earning it the name “forbidden rice.” It has a deep, nutty taste—you can detect chocolate notes—and is high in fiber. It is rich in amino acids and high in vitamins and minerals such as iron, potassium and magnesium. It pairs beautifully with all cuisines and can be enjoyed steamed plain, in a pilaf, stir-fried or with salad. It makes a spectacular Thai rice pudding with coconut milk. Unlike other black rices from Asia, “forbidden rice” is not glutinous or rough. An organic variety is available from Lotus Foods and other purveyors. According to Lotus Foods, a specialist in exotic rices, Chinese scientific research indicates that black rice is beneficial to the kidneys, spleen, stomach, eyes and blood circulation.